Tim Rice (Tag The Shooter)/ALOST

akoiki-passport2 – by Adesina O. Koiki
A Lot of Sports Talk editor-in-chief

BALTIMORE — Every swing from Gunnar Henderson carries the potential to be a special one, and his sweet lefty stroke during the second inning of Wednesday night’s game marked a milestone event in the grandest way possible. Literally.

Henderson hit his second career grand slam as part of a five-run second inning for the Orioles, who defeated the Boston Red Sox 6-1 to take two out of three in the series against their American League East rival. Ace Corbin Burnes did not allow an earned run in seven innings of work, while Ramón Urías also hit a homer and drove in Baltimore’s other two runs as the team is now a season-high 16 games over .500 (35-19).

The granny had greater significance, as that marked Henderson’s 50th career home run, making him just the fourth Oriole to have 50 career homers before turning 23, joining Manny Machado, Boog Powell and Major League Hall-of-Famer Eddie Murray. Also, Henderson once again became the American League’s home run leader this season, tying the Houston Astros’ Kyle Tucker with his 18th dinger.

The five-run outburst came after Boston scored first in the top of the second when Connor Wong scored on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Dominic Smith. With runners on first and second with two outs, Urías singled to center to drive home Colton Cowser from second to tie the game. Catcher James McCann followed by drawing a walk, the first free pass he had drawn in 81 plate appearances this season up to that point.

That turned the lineup over to Henderson, who drove a 1-0 pitch from Boston starter Kutter Crawford 422 feet into the right-centerfield bleachers to give the Orioles a crooked number in the frame and a 5-1 lead.

From there, Burnes took over, continuing to repay the team’s faith in going out and acquiring the former Cy Young winner in the offseason to front the rotation by cranking out his seventh consecutive quality start. He navigated in and out of trouble in the seventh, allowing a couple of baserunners before stranding them by striking out Ceddanne Rafaela to end the threat with his 108th and final pitch.

*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Wednesday evening’s game, with photos taken by DC-area photographer Tim Rice. After clicking on a photo to enlarge the picture, press the left and right arrow buttons on either side of the caption to scroll through the rest of the pictures that appear on the first page, Also, click on the numbers and/or arrow appearing immediately below the picture grid to load the next set of photos. There are 17 pictures in total.

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Tags : Baltimore OriolesBoston Red SoxGunnar HendersonMajor League Baseball

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